The reality show that spotlighted Donald Trump, The Apprentice, didn’t last more than one season after former California Arnold Schwarzenegger took over following the now-president’s departure. During one of Trump’s rallies on Friday night in Mississippi, the real estate billionaire lamented the show’s end and suggested that Schwarzenegger was responsible, Breitbart reports.
“Fourteen seasons and when I left crazy Arnold took over,” Trump said.
When Schwarzenegger took over, Trump’s iconic catchphrase “you’re fired” was replaced with “you’re terminated.” At the rally, Trump claimed to have watched the show and said he wasn’t impressed.
“It didn’t do too well, it was dead. It was dead from the first episode, I saw him and I said ‘It’s terrible! What have they done to this beautiful show? Arnold!”
Schwarzenegger previously blamed Trump for the failure of The Apprentice. After the 72-year-old actor left the show, he revealed that he “loved” working with NBC and the show’s creator, Mark Burnett, as well as the celebrities and crew involved with the project. But per Variety. Schwarzenegger said that Trump’s association with the show left a “bad taste” in people’s mouths and they don’t want to support it in any way. He highlighted the divisiveness of Trump and said he believes the show was swept up into the controversy.
Although The Apprentice is reportedly not canceled, Schwarzenegger said he would not return if asked.
"I want to just pray for Arnold if we can for those ratings." - Trump jokes about 'The Apprentice' ratings at National Prayer Breakfast pic.twitter.com/a4jWS62xA7— Fox News (@FoxNews) February 2, 2017
Per The New Yorker, an Apprentice staffer reportedly said that Burnett wasn’t happy about Trump’s run for president and faulted him for killing the show.
Burnett is believed by some to be largely responsible for turning Trump into an icon of American success. According to The Apprentice showrunner Jay Bienstock, Burnett likens his shows to great novels or films and likes them to feel larger than life. Some of Burnett’s other shows include The Voice and Shark Tank.
Although Schwarzenegger has been critical of Trump in the past, he told USA Today that he is careful with such criticism and chooses his battles to avoid becoming known as a critic of the president.
“I’m not positioning myself to be critic of Trump, only when it’s obvious,” he said.
“That’s why you don’t hear from me for months, even if I don’t like what’s going on.”
During the same interview, Schwarzenegger said that he hoped Trump and his White House goes to see his new movie, Terminator: Dark Fate.
“I hope the whole White House goes and sees the movie,” he says. “Because we’ll sell more tickets this way.”